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Australian state police creates crypto division to trace transactions

The usage of crypto in criminal activity has reportedly significantly increased because the AFP made its first crypto seizure in early 2018.

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Australian state police sets up crypto division to trace transactions

Police in Australia is attempting to boost cryptocurrency expertise and trace crypto transactions by establishing a separate police group.

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) has generated a fresh cryptocurrency unit to spotlight monitoring crypto-related transactions, The Australian Financial Review reported on Monday.

Stefan Jerga, the national manager of the AFPs criminal asset confiscation command, said that the usage of crypto in criminal activity had significantly increased because the AFP made its first crypto seizure in early 2018. In response , AFP made a decision to set up a separate crypto team in August, Jerga noted.

The increased concentrate on illicit crypto transactions comes amid AFP seizing much more criminal assets compared to the authority had originally expected. The AFP officially reported on Monday that it reached its goal of seizing $600 million from financial crimes 2 yrs before schedule. The mark was originally set by the AFP-led Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce and was likely to be reached by 2024.

Since February 2020, the AFP has seized $380 million in residential and commercial property, $200 million in cash and bank accounts, and $35 million in cars, boats, aircraft, artworks, luxury items and cryptocurrencies. Jerga noted that crypto seizures were small in comparison to traditional criminal assets like property and cash, however the additional focus is likely to provide more insights.

Based on the AFP manager, the surroundings triggered the creation of a standalone team, against lots of officers picking right up a few of this expertise within their overall role. He added that the capability to trace crypto transactions across blockchains is actually, important alongside national security, child protection among others.

Earlier this season, the official at the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) expressed skepticism concerning the transparency of cryptocurrencies. AUSTRAC deputy leader John Moss argued that cryptocurrencies could possibly be used anonymously, quickly and across international borders, which made them attractive for criminals, including neo-Nazi groups.

Related: Police should quit attempting to access everyones data, says legal expert

Contrary to public opinion, which supposes that Bitcoin (BTC) is anonymous, Bitcoin transactions aren’t anonymous. Instead, theyare publicly trackable through blockchain explorers. While its technically possible to perform an anonymous BTC wallet, it really is becoming more and more difficult to conduct BTC transactions anonymously as transactions are very often connected with users Know Your Customer data.

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